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Standard vs Compact Cranks

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Hello,
I am getting ready to order my first road bike tomorrow (a Cannondale CAAD9 5) and have a choice between a standard FSA Gossamer BB30 Double, 52/38 or FSA Gossamer BB30 Compact, 50/34. I don't expect to be climbing crazy hills often, so I am not sure if the compact crank is necessary, but if it is a good choice due to it being versatile I might go ahead and order it with that. Will 2 teeth make that big of a difference? Any advice or guidance would be appreciated!

Thanks,

Mark
post #2 of 11

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

Big difference? Not really. I have a CAAD 9 with a standard double and a Synapse with a compact double. I ride in New England and never wished I had one crank over the other while out riding. If you were concerned about climbing hills I would suggest the compact. IMHO a fit rider should be able to use the standard without any problem.
post #3 of 11

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

Another way of looking at it is that you can swap out chainrings on a 110bcd compact to give you a 52/38 combo, but you can't take a 130bcd crank below 38 for an inner ring.

Likewise, you can't take a compact over a 53t outer ring because of ring flex.

Really depends on the flexibility you want - low end vs. high end.
post #4 of 11

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

Are you just out for group rides, centuries, solo efforts? Or are you maybe racing? If it is the prior then it probably doesn't matter as much. Choose the bike you like the best.
post #5 of 11

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

I personally didn't like any of the doubles I test rode prior to my purchase, so I went with a triple. I know there is no triple option for that bike, I'm just playing devil's advocate.

The problem for me was lack of versatility in the lower gearing combination; I continuously felt like there was something missing, and there was; a third sprocket up front. I suggest buying the right bike the first time; think ahead if you can and try to avoid having to change out expensive parts later.

Now, realize I live in the Denver area and there are plenty of hills here; some of which I need or want to have a triple for. I have no idea where you'll be riding, what type of riding you will be doing or what exactly you mean when you say "I don't expect to be climbing crazy hills often" so I suggest riding both versions if it is possible to feel it out.

P.S. You're getting the charcoal color, right? It's sexy as hell.
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

Thanks for the great replies. I plan on doing sprint tri's and eventually moving up into longer races. I'm sure I will do some some charity rides, such as the MS150 etc. but not sure how often I will be going to the mountains with it (realizing these aren't the Rockies here!). The owner of the local bike shop said he rides a Super Six with standard gears and just rode an 18% grade with it and had no problem.

Thanks again!

BTW- I'm getting the Charcoal
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Serious Chris View Post

Now, realize I live in the Denver area and there are plenty of hills here; some of which I need or want to have a triple for. I have no idea where you'll be riding, what type of riding you will be doing or what exactly you mean when you say "I don't expect to be climbing crazy hills often" so I suggest riding both versions if it is possible to feel it out.
I live in Charlotte, NC
post #8 of 11

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Propnose View Post
BTW- I'm getting the Charcoal
YES!!
post #9 of 11

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Propnose View Post
I live in Charlotte, NC
Charlotte is a nice place to live.
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

Ordered my bike yesterday and I opted for the standard crank. Thanks for everyone's input - greatly appreciated! Now I can't wait for the weekend to get out there and put some miles under me!
post #11 of 11

Re: Standard vs Compact Cranks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Propnose View Post
Ordered my bike yesterday and I opted for the standard crank. Thanks for everyone's input - greatly appreciated! Now I can't wait for the weekend to get out there and put some miles under me!
Sweet! Post pics when you get it please.
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